Agreement to Rectify (ATR): A Game-Changer for RTO Compliance in Australia Leave a comment


We recently hosted an online webinar with VET industry experts John Price and Ben Thakkar  related to VET Sector compliance. Here’s the valuable information they shared with the participants.

Are you an RTO grappling with the relentless pressure to resolve non-compliance issues within a mere 28 days? If so, there’s a breath of fresh air coming your way. Introducing the Agreement to Rectify (ATR), a groundbreaking initiative that offers Registered Training Organisations (RTOs) the much-needed time and flexibility to address compliance issues effectively. This is not just a procedural change; it’s a complete mindset shift that could revolutionise the way we think about compliance in the vocational education sector.

What is the Agreement to Rectify (ATR)?

The ATR is not just another acronym; it’s a paradigm shift in how RTOs approach compliance. Spearheaded by ASQA, this initiative allows you to tackle non-compliance over an extended period—up to three months, to be precise. No more hasty decisions; the ATR fosters a culture of thoughtful, sustainable solutions. This is a significant step towards achieving educational excellence and industry relevance. It’s about creating a culture of continuous improvement, where RTOs are encouraged to strive for excellence rather than just meeting the bare minimum requirements.

How Does ATR Work?

When you receive a non-compliance notice, you can now request an Agreement to Rectify. ASQA will provide a template that guides you through the process of identifying the issues, proposing actions, and specifying the evidence you’ll submit. This structured approach is designed to make you think deeper about the root causes and not just apply band-aid solutions. It’s a comprehensive approach that requires you to be thorough and meticulous, ensuring that you address the issue at its core. This is a game-changer in the world of compliance, offering a more nuanced and effective way to tackle challenges.

The Importance of Sticking to the Agreement

Commitment is key. Once your ATR is approved by ASQA, it’s imperative to adhere to the plan. You’re required to update ASQA on your progress two months into the agreement. Deviating from the plan without ASQA’s approval could land you in hot water, so communication is crucial. This is not just about ticking boxes; it’s about creating a culture of continuous improvement and accountability within your organisation. It’s about building a relationship of trust and collaboration with ASQA, which can be invaluable in the long run.

The Benefits of ATR for RTOs

  • Time to Reflect: The ATR gives you the luxury of time to critically evaluate your compliance strategies. This is invaluable in an industry that is constantly evolving.
  • Focused Solutions: It encourages you to dig deeper and address the real issues, not just the surface-level symptoms. This is about creating long-term solutions that will stand the test of time.
  • Improved Communication: Regular check-ins with ASQA create a collaborative and transparent environment, making compliance a team effort. This fosters a culture of openness and accountability, which is crucial for long-term success.

Additional Insights

The ATR is not just a procedural change; it’s a mindset shift. It encourages RTOs to be proactive rather than reactive, focusing on long-term solutions that benefit not just the organisation but also the students and the industry at large. This is a significant step towards achieving educational excellence and industry relevance. It’s a holistic approach that takes into account the complexities of running an RTO, offering a balanced and nuanced way to address compliance issues. It’s about creating a more resilient and adaptable vocational education sector, capable of meeting the challenges of the 21st century.


The Agreement to Rectify (ATR) is more than just a compliance tool; it’s a catalyst for change, driving RTOs towards a future of sustainable and effective compliance strategies. For more insights and practical tips on navigating the ATR and other compliance challenges, don’t forget to watch our YouTube video.

Call to Action: At VET Resources, we’re committed to empowering RTOs with the knowledge and tools they need for success. Visit our website for a plethora of resources designed to elevate your RTO’s compliance game.


Q.1. What is ASQA?

A.1.The Australian Skills Quality Authority (ASQA) is the national regulator for Australia’s vocational education and training sector.

Q.2. How do I request an ATR?

A2. After receiving a non-compliance notice, you can request an ATR by reaching out to ASQA.

Q.3. What if I don’t adhere to the ATR?

A.3. Non-adherence to the ATR could result in penalties and further complications with your compliance status.

Q.4. Can I modify the ATR?

A.4.Yes, but any changes must be communicated to and approved by ASQA.

Q.5. How can VET Resources help my RTO?

A.5.VET Resources offers a wide range of training and compliance resources tailored to meet the needs of RTOs across Australia.

Q.6. What are the common causes of non-compliance?

A.6.Common causes can range from outdated training materials to inadequate assessment methods.

Q.7. How often does ASQA audit RTOs?

A.7. The frequency of audits can vary and is determined by a range of factors including past compliance history.

Q.8. Is the ATR applicable to all types of training packages?

A.8.The ATR is generally applicable to a wide range of training packages but it’s best to consult ASQA for specifics.

Q.9. What are the penalties for non-compliance?

A.9. Penalties can range from fines to the revocation of RTO status.

Q.10. How can an RTO prepare for an ASQA audit?

A.10. Preparation involves a thorough review of all training materials, assessment tools, and internal processes to ensure they meet ASQA guidelines.

Q.11. What are the key elements of a successful ATR?

A.11. A successful ATR involves clear communication, meticulous planning, and rigorous execution.

Q.12. How does the ATR impact the vocational education sector?

A.12. The ATR has the potential to significantly improve the quality and effectiveness of vocational education in Australia.

Q.13. What are the long-term benefits of implementing an ATR?

A.13. The long-term benefits include a more resilient and adaptable vocational education sector, capable of meeting the challenges of the 21st century.

Q.14.  How does the ATR align with the National Vocational Education and Training Regulator Act?

A.14. The ATR aligns with the act by promoting quality, consistency, and compliance across the vocational education sector.

Q15. What resources are available to help RTOs navigate the ATR process?

A.15.Various resources, including templates and guidelines, are available to assist RTOs in successfully implementing an ATR.

The information presented on the VET Resources blog is for general guidance only. While we strive for accuracy, we cannot guarantee the completeness or timeliness of the information. VET Resources is not responsible for any errors or omissions, or for the results obtained from the use of this information. Always consult a professional for advice tailored to your circumstances.

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